1. On Damaging Rock - by Ben Moon

    On Damaging Rock - by Ben Moon

    I remember when North East climber and photographer, Mark Savage, sent me a photo of the damage done to the classic Bowden problem 'Vienna'. The damage is obviously due to it's popularity and 'Vienna' is certainly not unique in this respect.

    There will be classic problems all over the country which are sadly changing for the worst. One of the causes of this damage is from excessive brushing to remove excess chalk so as to improve the grip between fingers and rock. We all do it and it’s almost become a ritual, part of the mental process of preparing for a hard send. However it’'s worth questioning how effective this process is, is it worth the damage it causes and are there better alternatives for improving the friction and therefore your chances of success?

    I have done plenty of brushing in my time and my company even sells brushes, but in most cases I don’'t actually believe it does help to improve the friction. The only cases where it might help, are where the hold obviously hasn’'t been brushed for a long time and is really caked in chalk. In my experience, this is not often the case and holds generally are pretty clean. If the hold is relatively clean, and by clean, I don’'t mean free of chalk, I just mean free of large particles of chalk or layers of chalk then brushing is unlikely to provide any advantage other than a psychological one.

    I certainly don’'t see how it will dry out the hold and remove moisture, which is really what you want. Therefore in most cases, I would say brushing is pretty much a waste of time and the benefit will be far outweighed by the long term damage you will do to the rock. Even if you are dealing with hard rock types which aren’'t easily damaged, at the very least the hold will become polished over time. You can see polished holds everywhere and although I am not saying that brushing is the cause of this polish, it'’s certainly a contributing factor and should be avoided where p

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  2. A Peek Into Ben's Logbook by Lattice Training

    A Peek Into Ben's Logbook by Lattice Training

    The Moonboard is becoming a common sight at climbing gyms around the country. On the surface the Moonboard is just a steep training board, but behind the scenes there’s some secret sauce in the form of the app and lighting system that are used for recording, sharing and displaying problems with users all around the world.

    Apps...sharing information...that smells like some interesting data! Because Ben lives just down the road from Lattice Training HQ we thought it would be fun to team up and have a look at some of the data behind the Moon Board. To kick things off Ben has kindly let us have a peek at his Moonboard logbook so we can see what he's been up to on the board!

    First thing first, let's see how hard Ben tends to climb on the board!

    From this distribution, it looks like Ben tends to warm up between 6B+ and 7A/+, after that the number of problems at each grade decreases suggesting that things get trickier for him from 7A/+ upwards. Given that Ben’s climbed up to 8B+ outdoors it’s interesting to note that there’s not a lot of harder problems in his logbook. It might be informative to take a look at how many attempts he tends to take on things as this will tell us a lot about the style of his sessions.

    Looking at this we can see that Ben tends to flash a large proportion of the problems he tries, even at higher grades. This would explain why there’s not a lot of 8th

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  3. Route Setting by Katja Vidmar

    Route Setting by Katja Vidmar

    Just had my morning coffee and I’m already running around the house looking for my climbing shoes…found them! MoonDust check, chalk bag check, more coffee check… Crash pad? No, not today. It’s setting day, I need my drill! 

    I love climbing outside, however, lately I’ve been spending most of my days on route setting. It became a little bit of both passion and work and most of all, a big challenge for me. But I like a good challenge. 

    From summer till now, I have done quite a few trips around Europe (Germany, Austria, Spain) and US (Texas) for all kinds of setting - commercial setting, setting for training camps and competition setting. The highlight was definitely WYCH in Innsbruck in September, where I got a chance to set with Jacky Godoffe and all other setters. It was a great learning experience for me as I learnt all about route setting and also a lot about myself. 

    Moving onto the end of the year, I will need to squeeze in some outdoor climbing as well. Fresh air is needed every once in a while. So the plan for December is a quick visit to Slovakia to set a training camp and then another trip to the US where I have planned a short trip to Horse Pense 40. It should be really fun!

    Setting in WYCH , Innsbruck (Germany)

    Innsbruck setting crew

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  4. MoonBoard Masters 2017

    MoonBoard Masters 2017

    The MoonBoard Master 2017 is the first climbing competition that will be simultaneously live streamed from MULTIPLE locations around the world. It’s also the first time YOU will have the opportunity to watch and climb the competition problems LIVE as they’re revealed. Ever watched a climbing competition and wanted to try the problems yourself? Perhaps you've even thought, ‘I bet I can top that..’. The chance will be yours, from 9 December onwards, on any MoonBoard with the MoonBoard Masters 2017 hold setup.

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  5. Muten Röshi, Albarracin by Michiel Nieuwenhuijsen

    Muten Röshi, Albarracin by Michiel Nieuwenhuijsen

    #MoonTeam athlete, Michiel Nieuwenhuijsen, climbs at Albarracin which has one of the best boulder areas in Spain. Within climbers, it is rated for the next best bouldering area in Europe, behind Fontainebleau. Albarracin is well known for it's ancient sandstone blocks that are solid and situated in a forest. Michiel climbs Muten Röshi, 8a+.

    Muten Röshi 8a+. Albarracin from Michiel on Vimeo.

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